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Sympathetic, Metabolic Adaptations, and Oxidative Stress in Autism Spectrum Disorders: How Far From Physiology?

Front Physiol. 2018;9:261

Authors: Messina A, Monda V, Sessa F, Valenzano A, Salerno M, Bitetti I, Precenzano F, Marotta R, Lavano F, Lavano SM, Salerno M, Maltese A, Roccella M, Parisi L, Ferrentino RI, Tripi G, Gallai B, Cibelli G, Monda M, Messina G, Carotenuto M

Abstract
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is a complex and multifaceted neurobehavioral syndrome with no specific cause still identified, despite the worldwide increasing (prevalence for 1,000 children from 6.7 to 14.6, between 2000 and 2012). Many biological and instrumental markers have been suggested as potential predictive factors for the precocious diagnosis during infancy and/or pediatric age. Many studies reported structural and functional abnormalities in the autonomic system in subjects with ASD. Sleep problems in ASD are a prominent feature, having an impact on the social interaction of the patient. Considering the role of orexins (A and B) in wake-sleep circadian rhythm, we could speculate that ASD subjects may present a dysregulation in orexinergic neurotransmission. Conversely, oxidative stress is implicated in the pathophysiology of many neurological disorders. Nonetheless, little is known about the linkage between oxidative stress and the occurrence or the progress of autism and autonomic functioning; some markers, such as heart rate (HR), heart rate variability (HRV), body temperature, and galvanic skin response (GSR), may be altered in the patient with this so complex disorder. In the present paper, we analyzed an autism case report, focusing on the rule of the sympathetic activity with the aim to suggest that it may be considered an important tool in ASD evaluation. The results of this case confirm our hypothesis even if further studies needed.

PMID: 29623047 [PubMed]

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